The Government of Albania - UN Programme of Cooperation 2012-2016 operationalizes the programme presented in the UN Common Country Programme Document for Albania 2012-2016 and provides a legal framework for its implementation, as well as additional information on matters such as partnership strategies, management arrangements, monitoring and evaluation and resource mobilization.
The strategic direction and eleven outcomes of the overarching Common Country Programme Document 2012-2016, defined during a Strategic Prioritization Retreat followed by extensive consultations was presented to the Government Modernization Committee, which confirmed that the document is well aligned with the National Strategy for Development and Integration 2007-2013 and that it reflects national development priorities and international commitments.
The Executive Boards of UNDP/UNFPA and UNICEF took note of the Common Country Programme Document in June 2011 and approved the final common country programme document for Albania in September 2011, which prompted the start of the formulation of the Programme of Cooperation 2012-2016. Where applicable, participating UN Agencies remain governed by their bilateral agreements with the Government of Albania, an overview of these agreements is provided below.
Overview of the Agreements between UN Agencies and the Government of Albania
The Programme of Cooperation 2012-2016 is nationally executed under the overall co-ordination of Department of Strategy and Donor Coordination. Government Ministries, NGOs, INGOs and UN Agencies implement programme activities.
The Programme of Cooperation 2012-2016 is operationalized by a set of signed (joint) Annual Work Plans. The (joint) Annual Work Plans and/or project documents describe the specific activities that will be conducted in one given year in order to work towards the results to be achieved. The Annual Work Plans form an agreement between the UN agencies and each implementing partner on the use of resources. The Annual Work Plans are signed by the national counterpart (often a line ministry) under the respective outputs and relevant UN agencies. The line ministry together with the relevant UN agencies are accountable for the appropriate use of resources and responsible for implementing the Annual Work Plan. The Annual Work Plans combine the inputs of all UN agencies.
The Programme of Cooperation 2012-2016 is supported by a coherent governance structure, with clear lines of accountability and decision-making. Overall programme management and coordination is the joint responsibility of the Government and the United Nations agencies.
Common set of management practices
In support of the joint implementation of the Programme of Cooperation 2012-2016, adoption of common management practices remains a priority for the UN in Albania. The use of common services aims to promote efficiencies in UN procurement, maximise the use of funds in support of differing agency mandates and operations, and acquire locally commonly procured commodities and services more effectively and efficiently through collaboration, thereby reducing transaction costs and improving value for money.
An inter-agency Operations Management Team (OMT) comprised of Operations Officers/Managers has been in place for UN Albania since 2006 to support the harmonisation of common business practices, including the provision to the UN Country Team of operational updates and information on a regular basis.
In the area of Common Services, nine areas have been identified for cost savings from collective negotiations and joint procurements, through common Long Term Agreements. By the end of the Delivering as One pilot phase (2011), long term agreements were concluded for eight areas: (i) communications, (ii) travel services, (iii) interpretation, (iv) translation, (v) fuel consumption, (vi) event management, (vii) printing and (viii) banking. Moreover, in an effort to address coordination needs in the area of human resources, UN Common Local Consultants Rates and a UN common roster for translation services are established.
In line with the Paris Declaration and the Accra Agenda for Action, the UN in Albania works towards greater alignment and use of national financial and procurement systems. Implementation of a Harmonised Approach to Cash Transfer by UNDP, UNICEF and UNFPA aims to lower transaction costs for government.
In addition to operations practices, in the framework of the Programmed of Cooperation 2012-2016 UN agencies increasingly work jointly in the following cross-cutting practices: joint missions, evaluations, communications and resource mobilization.
UN Coherence Fund Administration
UNDP functions as the Administrative Agent of the UN Coherence Fund, and as such is responsible for the day-to-day financial administration, including managing contributions from donors, disbursements, accounting, maintaining supporting systems, and audit. In addition, the Administrative Agent compiles financial from participating agencies and submits them to the Resident Coordinator for dissemination to partners.
Signed memorandum of understanding between participating UN Agencies and UNDP